Hurricane Rina becomes a Category 2 storm

October 25, 2011 7:37:51 AM PDT
Hurricane Rina has strengthened to a Category 2 storm as it swirls off Central America's Caribbean coast.

A hurricane watch is in effect Tuesday for the east coast of the Yucatan Peninsula from north of Punta Gruesa to Cancun. A tropical storm watch is in effect from Chetumal to Punta Gruesa.

Rina's forecast track shows it possibly curving toward Cuba in the next few days, but senior hurricane specialist Michael Brennan at the U.S. National Hurricane Center says it could also move toward southern Florida.

Rina's maximum sustained winds are near 100 mph (160 kph). Additional strengthening is forecast and it could become a major hurricane Tuesday night or early Wednesday.

The hurricane is centered about 305 miles (490 kilometers) east-southeast of Chetumal and is moving west-northwest near 3 mph (6 kph).

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